First Ever Male Finalist Has Cracked Sports Illustrated Swim Search

It’s 2021, so if you’re going to do a swimsuit edition, you must include men? 15 finalists were chosen from the annual open casting call for 2021, six of whom end up in the upcoming issue. One male has made that list, Lewis Freese.

“Going through this process I have learned so much about myself and most importantly my identity,” Freese wrote in an Instagram post sharing the happy news. “To be honest, I have noooo clue where my gender really falls at the moment but all I can do is take things day by day and share every moment with all of you.”

“I want to work with Sports Illustrated so we can stop those who judge, criticize, or hate on those who are choosing to be themselves,” he wrote at the time.

“No longer should a man or woman feel they need to fit certain gender standards, no longer should stereotypes exist for sexual orientations, no longer should people hide their authentic character.”


The magazine, which hits stands on July 20th, will feature of lineup of models including Lais Ribeiro, Tanaye White and Emily DiDonato.

Welcome to the game outside the game! Follow us on our Sideaction Twitter handle, Instagram, and Facebook for the latest on sports and pop culture news across the web!

More from Side Action

More News & Stories